Well, that silly twit dog of mine needed his second bath in a week this morning. His second one ever, for that matter. And for the same reason as the first. He lucked into a couple of rotting trout corpses, an unpleasant but common byproduct of the spring fishing season. Not content with merely finding such treasures, he naturally had to acquire some proof in order to convince me he wasn’t fibbing.
So he rolled in them, covering himself in dirt, blood and gore and enveloping his entire little body in a miasma of eau de rot.
You’ve never seen a happier dog.
He was a little less pleased with the bathtub but submitted with reasonably good grace. Worth it I suppose.
After the first time, I’d kept him on the leash until we were well past the area of the corpse he found. Today, he found another “treasure” further upstream. He’ll remain on the leash for the morning walks for the foreseeable future.
I’m definitely missing the solitary aspect of walking in winter. The paths are just too darn busy these days. Everybody and their brother-in-law and their dogs are out there enjoying Spring. Can’t say I blame them but comparatively, it feels like playing on the highway. Ben enjoys the face time with other dogs but is a little frustrated because on the morning walks he’s being kept on his leash (those rotting fish I mentioned earlier).
For the most part, our evening walks occur further from the creek, so I still let him off then, and will continue, despite what happened last evening. As usual, he was some 50 yards (meters) ahead of me, scouting. He disappeared from my sight briefly as I was rounding a turn. When I spotted him next, I groaned.
He was on his back and rocking joyfully from side to side. This is hardly ever a good sign. I hurried over and called him off. Luckily, this time the object of his affections was the carcass of a desiccated salmon. The fish died months ago and had sort of freeze-dried over the winter. I was hopeful that the taint wasn’t too bad, as he wasn’t covered in gore and slime as he had been on the earlier, bath-worthy occasions.
I rubbed his flank and then smelled my hand. Not too bad. I’ve smelled worse after a day of fishing. Pretty sure.
Anyway, shortly afterwards, we met up with a woman walking her white poodle which was leashed and approximately Ben’s size. Ben, of course, dashed toward them and began playfully circling the poodle, hoping for a romp and some mutual sniffing of naughty bits.
The woman, who was rather stylishly dressed and sported dark sunglasses, wasn’t overly thrilled with Ben’s attentions. I was told that “Princess” was nipped by another dog and was nervous of them. Princess appeared fine to me, curious and unafraid, but I called Ben off. It reminded me of how some moms will feel a chill and immediately put a sweater on their child who was blissfully unaware of being cold.
We let Princess and the Queen Mum get well ahead of us while I diverted Ben’s attention by tossing a stick.
About 10 minutes later though, our paths crossed again. By now we were nearing the road and I had Ben back on his leash. The Queen Mum was inclined to stop and chat this time, probably because Ben’s attentions were somewhat curtailed. As we spoke, she bent to pat him.
I almost said something about his earlier roll in the salmon carcass. My internal debate lasted for the two seconds it took for her hand to make contact with Ben’s fur. I decided to smile and nod instead as she stroked him and chatted about the weather.
A minute or so later we bid each other a pleasant good evening. She’d probably find out when she got back to her car, or home. Or maybe not. When Ben and I returned, I held him close and sniffed deeply.
He was fine. He just smelled like an old fishing buddy to me.
If we meet again, I expect the Queen Mum’s reaction at that time will tell me if she agrees.